You invest so much in it, don't you? It's what elevates you above the beasts of the field, it's what makes you special. Homo sapiens, you call yourself. Wise Man. Do you even know what it is, this consciousness you cite in your own exaltation? Do you even know what it's for?
Dr. Peter Watts
is no stranger to MetaFilter. But look past his sardonic nuptials
, heartbreaking eulogies
, and agonizing run-ins with fascists
) and you'll find one of the most brilliant, compelling, and disquieting
science fiction authors at work today. A marine biologist skilled at deep background research, his acclaimed
2006 novel Blindsight [full text]
-- a cerebral "first contact" tale led by a diverse crew of bleeding-edge post-humans -- is diamond-hard and deeply horrifying, wringing profound existential dread from such abstruse concepts as the Chinese Room
, the Philosophical Zombie
, Chernoff faces
, and the myriad quirks and blind spots
that haunt the human mind.
's last, shattering insight is not the end of the story -- along with crew
, a blackly funny in-universe lecture on resurrecting sociopathic vampirism
), and a rigorously-cited (and spoiler-laden) reference section
, tomorrow will see the release of
Dumbspeech State of Grace Echopraxia [website]
, the long-delayed
"sidequel" depicting parallel events on Earth. Want more? Look inside for a guide to the rest of Watts' award-winning (and provocative) body of work. [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi
on Aug 25, 2014 -
Security researchers at North Carolina State University led by Xuxian Jiang (who had previously discovered 12 malicious Android applications
sold through Google's Android Market) have uncovered holes
in how the permissions-based security model is enforced on numerous Android devices. Called "leaks", these vulnerabilities allow new and existing malicious applications to eavesdrop on calls, track the user's location, install applications, send SMS messages, delete data from the device, and more. (via
posted by Blazecock Pileon
on Dec 5, 2011 -
The University of East Anglia's Climatic Research Unit
suffered a security breach
this week. Hackers made off with thousands of email correspondences between some of the world's top climate scientists, and posted them to the Internet1
Tony Hake has posted an article
at The Examiner, highlighting what he feels are the most egregious examples of scientists manipulating and hiding data to support the established theories about Climate Change. Some of the scientists involved counter
that the quotes are taken out of context, and that "People are using language used in science and interpreting it in a completely different way".
1 I'm not going to link to them, but the Examiner article mentions where to get them.
posted by Who_Am_I
on Nov 20, 2009 -
Neurosecurity: security and privacy for neural devices.
"An increasing number of neural implantable devices will become available in the near future due to advances in neural engineering. This discipline holds the potential to improve many patients' lives dramatically by offering improved—and in some cases entirely new—forms of rehabilitation for conditions ranging from missing limbs to degenerative cognitive diseases. The use of standard engineering practices, medical trials, and neuroethical evaluations during the design process can create systems that are safe and that follow ethical guidelines; unfortunately, none of these disciplines currently ensure that neural devices are robust against adversarial entities trying to exploit these devices to alter, block, or eavesdrop on neural signals. The authors define 'neurosecurity'—a version of computer science security principles and methods applied to neural engineering—and discuss why neurosecurity should be a critical consideration in the design of future neural devices." [Via Mind Hacks]
posted by homunculus
on Jul 8, 2009 -
The Anonymity Experiment
. Is it possible to hide in plain sight? Privacy-minded people have long warned of a world in which an individual’s every action leaves a trace, in which corporations and governments can peer at will into your life with a few keystrokes on a computer. Now one of the people in charge of information-gathering for the U.S. government says, essentially, that such a world has arrived.
posted by amyms
on Feb 16, 2008 -
Advanced methods of bomb detection and investigation.
New equipment developed to scan cars and people, such as a parking lot device which quickly bathes the car's trunk in invisible neutrons, a procedure that makes materials inside the trunk emit gamma-rays
that would indicate the presence of explosives.
Also, a bomb disposal robot which take[s] fingerprints before blowing [a] package up
posted by mcgraw
on May 3, 2004 -
Know what time it is, Kidz? It's U.S. Department of Justice Time!
On today's show, we'll learn why Hacking is REAL BAD,
and give you a chance to find out if you are a good cybercitizen
. Next, we'll meet Axel, the talking drug dog,
and his friends the Bomb Dog Bunch!
Then, we'll check in on the ATF, for some cool science fair ideas
And finally, just for you kids with crooks or international terrorists for parents, here's a nifty PDF coloring book
(Native American version
posted by eatitlive
on Feb 25, 2003 -